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potatobutter

Can you help appraise my violin?

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13 hours ago, Michael Appleman said:

Strads and Gel Gesus are like Fords and Chevys? Does that make the Maggini model the "Mopar" of violins, and Stainer copies the AMC Gremlin? Sorry, I know this doesn't really contribute to the discussion...;)

Fords and Chevys? Blasphemy! They're the Ferraris and Lamborghinis! And Maggini is clearly Alpha Romeo, and Stainer would be Mercedes!  ;) 

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On 11/29/2018 at 9:10 AM, Craigers said:

To me it goes back to the varnish. The varnish from post war European instruments though sometimes antiqued is different than this. If you look at pictures of the Collin Mezins from the 50's that you referenced the varnish is different, if you look at the antiqued Mougenot violins the varnish is different. The only instruments I've seen with this exact type of varnish are from China.

I don't see this as a later (50's)Collin Mezin at all.  For one, everyone  I have  seen from this time period seems to have the "flat" area at the top of the arching right at the bridge.  Scroll (especially, the eye) is nothing like the current CM I have in the shop now.  My first reaction after seeing the pics was Chinese, but that "comma" on the scroll pulls me away from that.  No idea now.   

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1 hour ago, FoxMitchell said:

Fords and Chevys? Blasphemy! They're the Ferraris and Lamborghinis! And Maggini is clearly Alpha Romeo, and Stainer would be Mercedes!  ;) 

Lol...whatever rocks your boat! :P

But the principle remains the same! ^_^

 

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Just for those of you who didn't grow up with American car cultcha, "Mopar" is the name for the Chrysler group "muscle" and "pony" cars, i.e; Dodge Chargers, Plymouth Road Runners et. al. Suggesting Stainer as an analogy for AMC was referring to American Motors being an "outlier" with some great little known cars like the AMX, and some strange little "high arched" models like the Pacer or "boxy" arched models like the Gremlin, once described by a comic as the most effective birth control ever invented for young men who were stuck driving one on a date...

I was just kidding around and wasn't trying to endorse the analogy, in fact, I spend a lot of time with recently arrived enthusiasts trying to convince them that violin making, and especially classic makers, SHOULD NOT be thought about as analogous to modern "brands," like comparing Steinways to Yamahas or Gibsons to Fenders. I guess one could make generalisations about the respective qualities of high-production centers, like Mirecourt vs. Markneukirchen vs. Mittenwald vs. Roumanian vs. Chinese etc., but when we're dealing with trade fiddles, we're faced with the basic problem that the person or people involved weren't necessarily trying to make the best playing and sounding violin they could, even if they had the skills and knowledge. They were making wooden boxes to certain visual and dimensional specs, so while there are some that do sound and play quite well and can be bargains, most are mediocre or quite lousy. I regularly get asked by students and amateurs if they should get a Mirecourt or a Markie or a Chinese, and I am constantly telling them to show me the violin they're being offered, that the "brand" or origin simply does not matter, not at this end of the price scale.   

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